As we approach the end of 2016, a year that many observe as a seemingly never ending string of tragedies and disappointments (at least from a domestic and world view), I look inward with mostly gratitude, contentment and joy. As you may remember, I began recording these ruminations of mine in time with our big move from Chicago to a little hippie town in the mountains of Colorado. Though it was with a great amount of excitement that we arrived, I was still very much unsettled in my roles as a wife and a mother. Looking back on those times, it’s hard to believe our little family is thriving today. And yet, here we are. In those darker times, it was an exploration of both Buddhism and, more deeply, yoga that helped me find my way back to myself. I’ve made it my personal mission these last four years to put self-care at the forefront of my priority list and it has paid off in a big way. I’ve certainly battled my way through some emotional hiccups along the way, but this year in particular has found me feeling more settled and less anxious than I ever remember feeling in my life.
For this reason, I’m determined it’s time to nourish others with some of the same passion I’ve been nourishing myself. Parts of me that were broken have healed in these last four years, and I’m ready to give. For starters, I’m finally giving in to my family. Instead of seeing my children as burdensome, freedom-killers, I now see them for who they really are: my purpose and my legacy. In addition, while they say there’s no love like a mother’s, I can tell you there’s no love like the love I feel from my little ones. Maybe it took getting to the ages (5 and 6) we’re at now, but I’ve gone from being needed by my children to being truly loved by them and it feels. so. good. So good, in fact, that I really want to grow our little community. We are going to try for a third baby for a short while, but it’s alright if it doesn’t happen. We can start a dog rescue! Because I’ve mastered the art of making time just for me outside the home, why not fill our home with as much chaos and love as possible?!
I’d also like to start giving more to the larger community. Giving time will be an option in the future, but it just isn’t right now. Instead we are setting up a “kindness account” that both Sean and I will use as we see fit to make donations of money or gifts to people and causes that humble us. I’m personally interested in helping other busy mothers enjoy time with themselves the way that I’ve been able to. It would also be wonderful to help fund someone else’s creative plans for community improvement. In Kauai, the Humane Society allows visitors to take out a dog for the day so you have a companion on the trails and on the beach. I wonder if they have that here????More research required.
Of course I have the same idealistic goals as I do every year- cut back on sugar, exercise more, purge my closets and drawers. But this year I’m really focusing on service to others, while still working in a healthy amount of self-care. Self-care in the form of subscription boxes!!! Did you know there are monthly boxes with everything from Korean beauty products to craft cocktail ingredients? Have I been living under a rock???
Here’s to all of my nearest and dearest as you kick off 2017 in your own special or not-so-special ways.